I do not want another baby.  I am not a happy pregnant woman, my body does not handle it well, and I can barely keep up with the two kids I already have some many days.  Even after we had a second boy and every other person I saw said “Oh, you have to try for a girl still” I replied “No, actually I don’t.  This uterus is closed.”  No hesitation or second guessing myself.  I know what I can and cannot handle.  But a funny thing happens when I realize my baby is almost walking and doesn’t want me to help feed him anymore; I miss the infant I brought home.  Some people would call it baby fever, but like I said, I really don’t want another baby.  No, what I have is baby hangover.

I do it to myself.  I like all the baby pages on Facebook, so all the cute newborn outfits show up in my newsfeed.  Last week I saw the most adorable pacifier attached to a stuffed baby lion.  I wanted it.  My baby is 14 months old, way past the recommended age for such a pacifier, but it was just so stinking cute I wanted to get it for him.  He would find some way to play with it right?

About a month ago a coworker brought in her newborn grandson to show around the office.  I knew I would get sad if I held him because he’s a little peanut of a thing and my baby is now 32 pounds.  While I’m used to the 32 pounds, once you hold an 8-pounder for comparison you realize just how big your baby is getting.  But just like when you’re out with friends and they offer you one more drink, which you know you will regret in the morning, when she held him out to me I scooped him up faster than you could say “Bar-ten-der!”  At least he was the one puking the next morning and not me.

Some of my friends are now pregnant with their third child, trying to get pregnant, or already have three.  While I’m totally happy for them, I do feel a little hungover after I see them.  I can be hard on myself.  They can handle three – why can’t I?  I have to remind myself that everyone has their own experiences, challenges, chemical make-up, and relationships that guide our choices.  Just like I wouldn’t judge a friend who chooses to only have two kids, I need to give myself the same courtesy.  I am doing all that I can for my kids, and that’s enough.